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Is alcohol the answer? ( a good read)

Peter S

Diamond
Joined
May 6, 2002
Location
Auckland, New Zealand
Guys, this thread is 16 years old.

BTW, methanol can be made into gasoline. NZ has a synthetic fuel plant at Motanui which converts natural gas into methanol. It then converted methanol to petrol. It now just produces methanol I think. It was the world's largest producer of methanol, not sure of current status.
 
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Scottl

Diamond
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Location
Eastern Massachusetts, USA
Anybody that proposes to run methanol in a road car has not spent any time around a sprint car or a pre ethanol Indy car. The exhaust chokes you and burns the hell out of your eyes. I can't imagine what it would be like to be in a city full of methanol burning cars. Next issue, you need about 13-1 compression ratio to make any power. Expect to get about 1/2 the miles per gallon with methanol that you get with gas. Why race with it? It is so cold as it vaporizes you can run 14-15 to 1 C R, big compression numbers make big power, like over 1000hp on a normally asperated 410 CI sprint car engine. When we ran Methanol in a 2.65L Indy Car engine you would get 980hp at 16,800RPM. The exhaust was so hot it was almost transparent and 15" away the intake stacks had frost on them.
There is also the issue of fire. Alcohol fuels burn almost invisibly and this could be a real hazard in the event of a crash where bystanders and even first responders might not immediately realize the vehicle was on fire.
 

Scottl

Diamond
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Location
Eastern Massachusetts, USA
Guys, this thread is 16 years old.

BTW, methanol can be made into gasoline. NZ has a synthetic fuel plant at Motanui which converts natural gas into methanol. It then converted methanol to petrol. It now just produces methanol I think. It was the world's largest producer of methanol, not sure of current status.
Of course the current trend is not to push the use of alcohol or other alternate fuels but rather to push for complete migration to EVs.
 

Ries

Diamond
Joined
Mar 15, 2004
Location
Edison Washington USA
Not a fan of Kushner, but the facts are-
the saudis invested $2 billion, not 4, in a fund that Kushner manages. He gets paid, and has a profit share, but he doesnt get anywhere near the whole thing.
and that was two years ago.
Trump is being paid something for the golf tournament at his course, but far below $2 , much less $4, billion.

But the years since 2006 have seen much more success for alternate fuels, most of which are not alcohol.
And, sure, it costs money to use hydrogen as fuel- but ultimately, all energy came from the sun, be it oil, coal, wind, or solar, its all just a temporary storage for energy that was originally mostly solar radiation.
toyota has been investing billions over the years on hydrogen systems, and the biggest problem is usually the tiny molecule size means much more expensive storage and transport systems. Its just not practical to need $2000 gas tanks in every car.
most of the predictions in the original essay have either been proven wrong, or chipped away at. The russians are christians, and yet, in every other way resemble, more and more, the islamic boogeymen in this essay.
 

Freedommachine

Stainless
Joined
May 13, 2020
From the factory service manual for my 1995 wrangler...

CAUTION: DO NOT USE GASOLINES CONTAINING METHANOL.

Use of methanol/gasoline blends may result in starting and driveability problems. In addition, damage may be done to critical fuel system components.

Methanol (Methyl or Wood Alcohol) is used in a variety of concentrations blended with unleaded gasoline. You may encounter fuels containing 3 percent or more methanol along with other alcohols called cosolvents.

Problems that are the result of using methanol/gasoline blends are not the responsibility of Chrysler
Corporation. They may not be covered by the vehicle
warranty.
 
Joined
Nov 19, 2007
Location
marysville ohio
I work on old Methanol powered Indy cars all the time. Worst case is a car that has a few inches of Methanol in the tank. some corrosion below the fuel level. Everything above the fuel level is destroyed by rust and corrosion. The vapors from Methanol are truly nasty.
 

neilho

Titanium
Joined
Mar 23, 2006
Location
Vershire, Vermont
The obvious problem with "is alcohol the answer?" is that there is no "the" answer. We've been using multiple fuels and power sources for eons and will continue to do so and it's mostly driven by economics. Duh.

He really thinks energy conservation is a joke? Why doesn't he just pump gas out onto the ground? Simple common sense that one saves money by economizing.

More bloviation.
 

standardparts

Diamond
Joined
Mar 26, 2019
Guys, this thread is 16 years old.
Yes it is....but the interesting part is any number of countries find themselves in a bind for energy mainly gas and oil to the extent they are putting coal fired plants back on line and making noises about rationing.

16 years. Same old shit---maybe even worse.
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2006
Location
Manchester, England
The other problem is with methanol

Its corrosive and will eat paintwork for lunch
but..

Weight for weight it gives far less energy than gas does so to go the same distance as a tank of gas would give you would have to have a tank 50% bigger....

Easy way to reduce your fuel comsumption.. live within 2 miles of where you work... you can walk in then and get fit too. :D

Actually that is rather the solution to a lot of energy consumption problems.
We in the west have become addicted to our suburbs and our malls and a lot of us want to live 50 miles away from work for some weird reason :(


Boris
I worked for just over 50 years and every job I had I could walk to Inside 40 minutes. That is apart from when I was working on company business away from home.

Regards Tyrone.
 

john.k

Diamond
Joined
Dec 21, 2012
Location
Brisbane Qld Australia
All the comment about methanol.....no methanol in gasoline here,its all ethanol......hence E85 etc............its also supposed to be the corn lobby in some US states ,far as I know corn makes ethanol.
 

Scottl

Diamond
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Location
Eastern Massachusetts, USA
The only good thing I'll say about alcohol in gasoline is at least it's better than the MTBE it replaced. Years ago I had to work with the straight stuff and the warnings on the one gallon jug were almost terrifying. Severe neurological damage from breathing fumes, etc.

Worst of all was the warning on the older jug that cautioned against letting it dry to crystalline form on the cap threads or an explosion might occur when loosening the cap!

Horrible stuff indeed.
 

standardparts

Diamond
Joined
Mar 26, 2019
"Time clocks...."...

I was once 'blessed' at Northrop by being 'promoted' from a four person office shared with my team, to one I shared only with a very exalted telecoms switching theory guru.

Gus "worked" kinda sporadically. Whenever a team of the brass hats came frantic to him with yet-another show-stopping emergency to be sorted out. Which he did. Very expertly. Mostly, he "hovered" in between with nothing to do until the next emergency.

So about an hour and a half after lunch, every dam' day - he went for an afternoon stroll (we were in Georgetown, DC) and brought back a premium "hand packed" ice-cream cone ...

Gus has both feet up on his desk, licking an ice cream cone, when MY boss (not his) pops in and makes the grievous tactical error of trying to chastise him over it:

"MISTER Giannopolis! We are paid to WORK here. Not sit on our ass with our feet up on a desk.!"

"For you maybe, little man. They pay you for where you are."

"They pay me for what I know!"

Gus finished his ice cream, made a phone call, handed me a note, says:

"Go see this guy. He's expecting you. There's no future HERE!"

So my new job started with a VERY nice pay rise.

About six months later, I hired my former boss's boss's boss. Former Head of the whole Division that had been shut-down when Northrop SOLD Page Communications Engineers off. Lock, stock, barrel.. and three dozen fewer staff!

One of the many things Gus "knew" .. well in advance of the deal being closed.

Premium-grade ice-cream? Dare not indulge too often, but damned if it doesn't bring a chuckle every single time.... over how it changed the course of my young life .... at just the right point in time!
As years pile up and a person moves around in most any industry you come across a "Gus" and thank your lucky stars you did not make him an enemy. I've known a "Jerry", "King", and "Larry" along with a few others. Only pissed off one or two and they accepted my apology.
 

jim rozen

Diamond
Joined
Feb 26, 2004
Location
peekskill, NY
"...only good thing I'll say about alcohol in gasoline is at least it's better than the MTBE it replaced."

One issue with the MTBE: the underground microbes hated it. When a fuel tank leaked in the past, it wasn't that big a deal. Once the bute was in there, the microbes were "NO TOUCHEE" and the contamination would spread far into aquifers.

MTBE was brought to you by the "oxygenated fuels industry" who pushed it far and wide.
 

Scottl

Diamond
Joined
Nov 3, 2013
Location
Eastern Massachusetts, USA
"...only good thing I'll say about alcohol in gasoline is at least it's better than the MTBE it replaced."

One issue with the MTBE: the underground microbes hated it. When a fuel tank leaked in the past, it wasn't that big a deal. Once the bute was in there, the microbes were "NO TOUCHEE" and the contamination would spread far into aquifers.

MTBE was brought to you by the "oxygenated fuels industry" who pushed it far and wide.
I wasn't aware of that issue and it is just one more negative in an already long list.
 








 
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